- Posted: 10:47 PM, April 25, 2011
Although no one from the Giants issued any statement or clarification, it is believed that for the time being nothing of great significance will change around the league, as the NFL has already sought an “expedited appeal to the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals.’’ Until that appeal is heard, coaches are not going to be rushing to the phone to contact their players, the doors of the practice facilities are not going to swing open to welcome in players and the free agency signing period will not begin. As one source said “Nobody is going to do anything they haven’t been doing until they’re told they have to.’’
Shaun O’Hara, the Giants player representative, last night in an email explained that Judge Nelson’s ruling won’t make any immediate difference in the stance most players adopt regarding the lockout.
“Although [Nelson] has issued an injunction, players have not received any information nor have we been contacted by anyone from our current clubs that would indicate their desire to have players commence working out at the team facility,’’ O’Hara wrote. “We are aware that the league is filing an appeal on the decision. Players are encouraged to do what is most convenient for them with respect to attempting to train at a club facility.
“Most players are currently working out on their own, and many are training in cities other than that of their current clubs location. Over the next couple days, I expect more information to be released with respect to the teams off-season program, should the teams allow us to begin training at the club facility.’’
The decertified NFL Players Association sent an email to the players suggesting they report to work today, even though the NFL insists it is not yet open for business. O’Hara is advising that his teammates continue to work out as they have been this off-season. He is rehabbing from ankle surgery. “I have already scheduled physical therapy and personal workouts for this week so I am not planning on going to [the Giants facility] this week.’’
According to reports, NFL management instructed teams to allow players access to the facility but recommended that the weight rooms remain closed. NFL spokesman Greg Aiello indicated if players show up for work, they will be allowed in. Their coaches won’t speak with them, though.
One player who definitely will try to get through the door is defensive tackle Chris Canty. “He will go to facility [Tuesday] and attempt to work out,’’ Canty’s agent, Brad Blank, told The Post. “If denied access, he will peacefully retreat. But as of [Tuesday] that will make the team in violation of the Judge's mandate.’’
Canty has a $250,000 workout bonus which at present is in danger of not getting paid because of the lockout.